Apolda is located in the eastern part of Thuringia , 10 kilometers from the state border with Saxony-Anhalt. Lies at the tip of the Thuringian basin and the valley of the river Ilmaue. Two streams flow through the center of the city, in the northwest the city territory is crossed by the river Ilm.


Several settlements appeared within the current city as early as the Bronze and Iron Ages. From the 1st century BC, representatives of the Germanic tribe Hermundur, who migrated from the Elba-Havel region, lived here. In the 8th-9th centuries, the Slavs arrived here and settled for a long time.

The first mention of the settlement dates back to 1119. Then it was called Appolde. It already had two churches, a church and a chapel. Presumably, the name was given by the area, which gave rich harvests of apples. Later it was modified to Appolda, Apoll, Appoulene. A document from 1123 mentions a castle that protected the village. There was also information about Dittrich von Abbold, a well-known representative of the princely family at that time.

In the second half of the 12th century, the castle became the residence of a noble family close to the Archbishop of Mainz . Around 1175, the dynasty split into two branches – Witzum and Schenken von Apolda. Under their rule, the village near the castle in the second half of the 13th century turned into a prosperous settlement. In 1260, a mint operated in it, where Apoldsche Schenken coins were issued.

In 1289, Apolda received the rights of the city, along with them a coat of arms and a seal. Later, a city wall with two gates was built for protection. In 1348, the von Apold dynastic line renounced their rights to the city to the Witzums. Later, in 1485, the city went to Ernestine Saxony .

At the end of the 13th century, a town hall was built within the current market square. In the 15th century, the first city council was formed. In the 16th century, the urban area expanded so much that it swallowed up the nearby villages. At that time, the basis of the knitting industry was laid in the city. It is believed that its founder was Strickermann. He taught the locals how to knit stockings using 5 needles. A fountain was erected in his honor in 2013.

After the Witzum dynasty ended in 1631, the castle and all their other possessions went to the University of Jena. At the turn of the 17th and 18th centuries, a hosiery factory appeared in the city. Its prosperity significantly influenced the rise of the economy. By the end of the 19th century, the textile company became dominant among other industries in Saxony-Weimer. During that period, the city expanded to the east and north. The defensive wall surrounding it with two towers was partially demolished.


The castle played a dominant role in the 12th century. It served as protection from enemy attacks from three sides. Until now, it has been preserved in the shape that was formed in the 16-17 centuries as a result of the reconstruction of the structure.

Other architectural monuments include buildings such as the Apolda Town Hall, the market ensemble, the brick viaduct, the station building, the Bismarck Tower, the former Zimmermann factory, the bank building, the Church of St. Martin, the Luther’s prayer house.

Why should we go shopping in Apolda?

Dealers in Apolda pay their trade tax here and contribute to economic growth in Apolda – unlike Zalando or Amazon.
By shopping in Apolda stores, you support local clubs, events and initiatives because they benefit from their financial support.
Around the market you will have everything important that we need without having to walk far – clothes, pharmacy, baker, butcher, supermarket, etc.
The personal contact with the owners is a wonderful opportunity to start a conversation with them. Because you know each other well, you can also get individual advice and find the most beautiful pieces of clothing.
More people who go shopping in the city center also means a higher quality of stay.
The more frequently the offers in the city center are used, the more likely it is that new entrepreneurs with great ideas will settle here.

Welcome for shopping tours to Apolda with Project Alpa Ost.

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